Chess boxing is a hybrid sport which combines the sport of boxing with games of chess in alternating rounds. Chess boxing fights have been organized since early 2003. The sport was started when Dutch artist Iepe Rubingh, inspired by fictional descriptions of the sport in the writing of Enki Bilal, organized actual matches. The sport has become increasingly popular since then. To succeed players must be both skilled chess players and skilled boxers.Play video
Structure and rules
A match between two opponents consists of up to eleven alternating rounds of boxing and chess sessions, starting with a four-minute chess round followed by two minutes of boxing and so on. Between rounds there is a one minute pause, during which competitors change their gear. The form of chess played is speed chess in which each competitor has a total of twelve minutes for the whole game. Competitors may win by knockout, checkmate, a judge's decision or if their opponent's twelve minutes of chess time elapses. If a contestant does not make a move in the chess round, he will be issued a warning by the referee and he must then make a move within the next 10 seconds.
Required chess skill
World-class chess-boxers are not just good boxers but are skilled chess players as well. For example, Sahzin has an Elo rating of around 1900 while European chess boxing champion Tihomir Atanassov Dovramadjiev is a FIDE Maste with a rating over 2300 and has won multiple major chess tournaments.